Skip to comments.WSJ: Hiroshima - Nuclear weapons, then and now.
Posted on 08/05/2005 5:08:42 AM PDT by OESY
Today--or August 6 in Japan--is the 60th anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, which killed outright an estimated 80,000 Japanese and hastened World War II to its conclusion on August 15. Those of us who belong to the postwar generations tend to regard the occasion as a somber, even shameful, one. But that's not how the generation of Americans who actually fought the war saw it. And if we're going to reflect seriously about the bomb, we ought first to think about it as they did.
...No surprise, then, that when news of the bomb reached Lt. Fussell and his men, they had no misgivings about its use: "...We were going to live."...
What about Japanese lives?... Since the ratio of Japanese to American combat fatalities ran about four to one, a mainland invasion could have resulted in millions of Japanese deaths--and that's not counting civilians....
Also true is that the threat nuclear weapons pose today is probably greater than ever before. That's not because they're more plentiful--thanks to the 2002 Moscow Treaty (negotiated by John Bolton), U.S. and Russian arsenals are being cut to levels not seen in 40 years. It's because nuclear know-how and technology have fallen into the hands of men such as A.Q. Khan and Kim Jong Il, and they, in turn, are but one degree of separation away from the jihadists who may someday detonate a bomb in Times or Trafalgar Square....
Looking back after 60 years, who cannot be grateful that it was Truman who had the bomb, and not Hitler or Tojo or Stalin? And looking forward, who can seriously doubt the need for might always to remain in the hands of right? That is the enduring lesson of Hiroshima, and it is one we ignore at our peril.
(Excerpt) Read more at opinionjournal.com ...
>>Torturing and beheading people, starting wars to enslave other countries, and fanaticism
So all the residents of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were slave owners and beheaders?
>>Hence, the bombs are the opposite of what you are saying.
Really? Hmm, tell that to children who were killed by those bombs.. I'm sure if they were around to argue their case with you, you'd have a much better insight..
>>My father was on Okinawa. He expected to go to Japan next. Thank God we had the bomb.
I believe God takes offense at any thanks for the bomb.
There is no excuse for it's use, for the fire bombing of Dresden and other cities.
>>As the grandson of a Pacific War Veteran, let me be the first to say: you're an [expletive deleted] idiot.
I'm sure there are many former residents of Nagasaki and Hiroshima who would call you the same -- cept they died in the blasts.
>> have talked to men who were assigned to be in the first wave of infantry & I will repeat their most polite reply to those who claim as you do . H*RSE SH*T!!! YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE F*CK YOUR TALKING ABOUT LITTLE BOY.
Look, war is hell, and I'm sure most infantry men would rather someone else die than them. That's understandable...
The problem is that killing hoards of civilians is not the answer. And as the son of an Army soldier, a former army man myself, I can gladly say dropping the bombs was wrong and a crime against humanity.
And yes, I do have an idea what I'm talking about -- it's why I don't have to resort to using expletives...
And there are today many Japanese who are damned glad the war ended when it did, otherwise they would never have lived to see 1946. I lived in Japan in the 1950s and got to know many of them. Unless you have firsthand information on the subject, the kindest word for your rant would be "revisionist."
Now now. That kind of talk gets a fella in trouble.
I had an intro polisci course once. Toward the end of the semester we spent a class discussing the atomic bombing of Japan.
Part of my preparation was reproducing newspaper headlines from the war, particularly Dec 7 1941, to try and get these kids to fathom that the mindset then was not the same as theirs now.
A couple of the young ladies in that class, long used to comfortable agreement with their hippy outlook, looked like deer in the headlights when I unloaded on them.
Pathetic. Haven't you ever heard that it is better to remain silent and be thought the fool, than to speak and remove all doubt?
"A couple of the young ladies in that class, long used to comfortable agreement with their hippy outlook, looked like deer in the headlights when I unloaded on them."
LOL!!! It's grand isn't it when you use facts and truth on these fools.
Can't really say I care what they would say about me: their country started the war. Mine ended it.
cept they died in the blasts
Good. Their deaths were part and parcel of the bargain they accepted when they acquiesced to the fascist leadership that led them into a war of conquest in the Pacific, and commenced, incidentally, with a sneak attack on our country.
And, beyond all that happy horsecrap, to the extent that their deaths afforded my grandfather the opportunity to live--to avoid his inevitable participation in Operation "Olympic" and "Coronet"--I say I'm quite delighted by the outcome.
Now, get lost you filthy quisling troll.
I notice that many of you can only reply to my post with expletives.
I'm sure you find it unbelievable that a conservative is not towing the conservative line on this issue.
You can't understand how someone can disagree with you on this unquestionable issue.
But I challenge you to consider that committing a regional genocide against civilians is a crime against humanity.
From your replies, it seems that many of you have not actually thought this issue through, but rather, have decided it was the right thing to do and are defending it on that basis.
I challenge you to look past a blind faith about the bomb and apply some critical thinking here...
Ask yourselves the following questions:
Did God fearing civilian Christians in Nagasaki deserve to die?
Did small children deserve to die?
Is it true justice to intentionally kill people who aren't in the military?
Would I think it be ok for this to happen had I lived in one those cities at the time?
It's easy to condemn a city and it's inhabitants to death from a distance. But what if this were your city?
Folks, it's time to put the thinking cap on and take the dogma cap off.
I think it comes from blindly believing that the use of the A bomb was good. If you actually had though this through, you'd have something to
>>to the extent that their deaths afforded my grandfather the opportunity to live
So you'd trade two cities for your grandfather? Isn't that rather selfish? Trust me, your grandfather isn't worth two cities... None of us are..
>>And there are today many Japanese who are damned glad the war ended when it did, otherwise they would never have lived to see 1946.
I'm sure there are over 100,000 who would disagree with them -- cept they died in the blast.
It's always easy to sacrifice someone else for one's own preservation. That doesn't mean they are right.
>>I lived in Japan in the 1950s and got to know many of them. Unless you have firsthand information on the subject, the kindest word for your rant would be "revisionist."
Your ancedotal experience does not mean Japan as a whole is thankful for the bomb. And I have not participated in revisionism.
Please reference all future inquiries to my tag line!
>>Idiots are idiots because they are too stupid to know that they are idiots.
I'm trying to promote intelligent discourse on this issue -- that's not an idiotic idea.
Simply using expletives, referring one to your tag line, and an unwillingness to intelligently discuss this issue all fits within the definition of idiocy.
>>It was them or us.
That's a false dichotomy. They weren't going to nuke us...
Why don't you ask God to explain Soddom and Gomorrah. I'm sure there were innocents there. You're argument is basically that "war is bad". Fine. But what's the difference between death by 5.56 mm or 20 megatons? You're still dead. Either all war and all killing is immoral, or there are times when war and killing are justified. Why don't you just come out and say what you really feel and not hide behind your "morality"
My Navy father-in-law (lightingguy's dad) was on his way over also and then his ship was turned around.
>>You're argument is basically that "war is bad". Fine.
War is bad, but often necessary -- sometimes its the only choice.
>>But what's the difference between death by 5.56 mm or 20 megatons?
Well, you can duck while being shot at.. But you can't really duck an Abomb...
To someone that was sitting in a ship off of coastal Japan (me), it wouldn't be a very difficult decision to make. The Japanese rape of Nanking, the atrocities they committed in the Phillipines, Pearl Harbor and all thrown together with Iwo Jima and Okinawa added up to a no-brainer.
The Japanese didn't know the meaning of humanity and in consequence learned, we hope a lasting lesson.